Sights, Sounds, Smells, Tastes, and Feels of Peace Corps/Island life
o Goats on the way to school
o Chickens/roosters/goats/sheep in my yard
o Street dogs-they are the equivalent of squirrels in the States
o Concrete jungle-everything is concrete: buildings and houses, walls around buildings, yards, the list goes on.
o Greenery everywhere, which is contrasted by the concrete
o Fruit trees everywhere-I can identify most fruit trees now
o Uniforms-students, bank workers, nurses, govt workers, everyone wears a uniform
o Men peeing anywhere they feel like at anytime, they don’t even try to hide it
o Garbage everywhere unfortunately…
o Brightly colored houses and cars
o Bright and tight clothing
o Crickets, roosters, frogs, sheep, goats
o Terrifying roar of the rain approaching from down in the valley
o Pounding of the rain on the galvanized metal roof-like golf balls landing on a car
o Garbage truck plays a really morbid song that sounds like creepy organ funeral music so you know its coming
o Gas tank truck also plays a song so you know its coming but it’s a little less creepy
o Ice cream truck plays predominantly row row row your boat or London bridge is falling down
o Fish truck blows a conch shell to let you know its approaching
o Music music music…music from the rum shops in valley on Fridays, music blaring from the vans. Interestingly, music genres here follow seasons. Reggae=summer; Soca=winter/spring, leading up to Carnival in July; Dancehall=fall/winter.
o Barking dogs
o Chickens at the crack of dawn (~5am)
o Car horns: saying hi to people; letting you know they are rounding a corner; over taking another car, etc.
o People shouting my name all the time; also people singing Valarie, Valara, ah, ah, ah. BTW they aren't actually singing my name, even though it sounds like it, but I'll take it. I think the song is fitting. :-)
o Breadfruit dropping from the tree-sounds like a bowling ball thudding into a carpet.
o Funky smells that cannot be identified nearly all the time
o Animal manure
o Rotting fruits/vegetables-I seriously hate this smell, and it seems to be very prevalent during mango/guava season in my yard, also the fact that I compost.
o Urine in the streets in town, or anywhere really, but especially town
o Smoke/roasting breadfruit
o Perfume-everyone smells real sweet, even men wear women’s perfume.
o Concrete floors
o Rigid, brittle laundry from handwashing, air drying
o People petting, touching, feeling my skin or hair
o Sponge (foam, and I'm not talking about memory foam) mattress/cushions
o Fresh fruits all year long
o Sugar overload-in fresh fruit juice, in cakes, in sweets, in nearly everything
o Fried food-if it isn’t sugary, then it’s fried. Fried chicken, fried fish, French fries, bakes (which are actually fried dough), etc.
o Soy chunks-my main protein source since I don’t eat meat.